Editor’s Note: Watches & Wonders (formerly SIHH) has moved online and Baselworld 2020 is canceled, but that hasn’t stopped watch brands large and small from debuting their new wares. Stay on top of this year’s best new watch releases here.
Celebrating the anniversary of its most iconic line, the Luminor, Panerai has introduced a range of new models with interesting materials and features. With a dark case and bright Super-LumiNova, the themes and concepts of the new collection are represented well in a single model: the $18,900 PAM 1119, which features both an unusual lume treatment and a new Fibratech case material.
The collection is united by a 44mm case rendered in a range of materials and water-resistant to 300m. Each model is powered by the brand’s in-house P.9010 automatic movement (including, in one instance, a GMT variant) with a power reserve of three days. The Luminor model is named for the luminous substance that gave its dials low-light and underwater legibility way back in 1950, so strong lume is emphasized alongside a general celebration of the collection’s 70th anniversary.
Panerai Luminor Marina PAM 1117, PAM 118, PAM1119
A trio of Luminors in exotic, technical materials represent what’s new at Panerai. The PAM 1119 is rendered in Fibratech, which comes from the aeronautics industry and is made from “recyclable mineral fibres derived from molten volcanic rock and mineral additives.” The PAM 1118 is in the brand’s familiar Carbotech material, and a third model (PAM 1117) uses a new titanium 3D-printing technology called Direct Metal Laser Sintering (or DMLS).
Each has the unusual feature of strips of luminescent material in the crown, crown guard and the crown-locking lever — highlighting the iconic collection’s most prominent feature. It also encircles the dial, and even the stitching of the straps glow in the dark. Notably, each of these three models includes a whopping 70-year watch warranty.
Key Specs: $18,900 (Fibratech PAM1119, DMLS titanium PAM1117); $16,000 (Carbotech PAM1118); Limited to 270 units each
More Panerai Luminor Marinas
For a slightly more traditional look, Panerai is offering more variations without the lumed cases, but using the same technical materials and offering other aesthetic variations. There are options in Fibratech, Carbotech and titanium, each of which is lightweight to help the otherwise boldly sized Panerai watches wear more easily. (A blue-dialed model in the brand’s own Goldtech gold alloy is on the heavier side.) One is a GMT made for the brand’s partnership with the Luna Rossa sailing team that features a sailcloth-textured dial and red highlights.
Amid all the vintage reissues, it’s cool to see Panerai looking very modern and innovative with its material use. Black watches are hot, and all the new models are either in elements that are naturally dark or are coated with DLC. The new collection consists solely of five-figure watches in limited numbers, and although that’s not unexpected for Panerai’s prestigious name, in-house movements and technical materials, it means the brand is aiming for relatively niche collectors with these releases.
The new Fibratech and DMLS materials in particular are exciting, and result in some special, heavy-hitting (but light-wearing) Panerai watches. The decorative lume in unusual places won’t be everyone’s cup of tea, aesthetically, but it does make for an appropriately futuristic look. Other relatively traditionally styled models offer the same materials without crazy lume, but the whole collection remains edgy, masculine and contemporary. Paneristi will gobble them up, but we can reasonably hope to see more of the materials as well as more material experimentation in the future.